What is your biggest pet peeve?Constant tardiness
In a meeting with your peers is your phone on the table, in your pocket or purse, left at your desk or in your car?In my pocket or purse
What is your favorite kind of sandwich?Grilled cheese
What is your usual bedtime?Midnight
Do you dance in the car?Heck yes! I also sing in the car … all the time.
What was the occupation you wanted to be when you were a kid?I changed my mind every other week, it seems, but a teacher, veterinarian and professional cyclist, just to name a few.
University Alumni Spotlight:
Maria Fesz ’09
Major While at Mount Union: Music performance, cello
Original Hometown: North Olmstead, OH
Current Job Title: Freelance musician and cello teacher at the University of Mount Union
I teach private cello lessons through Mount Union’s Preparatory Division and play my cello in numerous regional orchestras, for weddings, musicals, etc. Basically, for anyone who needs a cellist, I’m there! I also sing and play other string instruments from time to time.
MY EXCEPTIONAL STORY
Home on Campus
When I visited Mount Union as a high school student, I instantly felt at home on campus. Everyone was friendly even though they didn’t know who I was, and that really stuck with me. I also wanted to move far enough away from home to be independent, but close enough that I could easily go home when I needed to.
Mount Union allows students to be involved in many different activities, regardless of their area of study. For example, many members of the Mount Union Concert Choir were mathematics, history or physics majors. Or, like me, they were music majors who played another instrument but still loved to sing. Many bigger schools overlap their scheduling with groups like this, so students can only participate in one area of expertise. I think Mount Union’s approach to student involvement gives each student a more well-rounded education and social experience than a larger school.
That’s a tough question, I would say all of the full-time faculty members in the Department of Music. They were amazing to work with and learn from over my four years. I especially remember when I changed my major from music education to music performance that Dr. Elaine Anderson, professor of music, Dr. Patricia Boehm, chair of the Department of Music and associate professor of music, and Jonathan Willis, director of bands, were very helpful and supportive as I made that difficult decision.
Starting a Career
I was a member of the cello section for the Ohio Light Opera (OLO) orchestra in the summer of 2009. OLO is a fully professional summer operetta company out of Wooster, OH.
While I was on campus, I was a member of Calliope, Mount Union Players, Mu Phi Epsilon and Ohio Collegiate Music Education Association (OCMEA).
I attended Youngstown State University and earned a master’s degree in music performance in 2011.
Preparing for Life After College
Because I was involved in so many different music ensembles, I was able to think outside of my comfort zone of the cello. This made me a very versatile musician, and I feel comfortable in almost every professional situation (even if I still get a little nervous performing every once in a while).
I lived in King, Shields, an on-campus house and then Jae Manor.
My goal is, and always will be, to get people excited about music and art.